This Day in History: November 2nd, 1918

This Day in History: November 2nd, 1918

Local Option for Milltown

Whether there shall be saloons in the borough of Milltown or not will be determined by the voters next Tuesday. It is an opportunity on that day for the men looking to the progress of the community along every line to exercise their right of suffrage in a manner that will abolish the saloons.

The saloon question is long past the economic stage, it is past the argumentative period when its disadvantages must be presented, except in some sections; indeed it is recognized universally that it is a distinct evil and conditions will be better in absolutely every respect when booze is gone. Intoxicating liquors stand condemned before the world. To vote in favor of saloons is to be placed in the position of sanctioning something that the world recognizes as wrong.

In Milltown the only argument in favor of saloons that has found the light of day is that in the event the saloons are closed in the borough, the drinkers will go to New Brunswick or South River. The argument runs that the drinkers will go not for one drink but to load up and then come back into the town, in a drunken condition. The question must be asked, how many such will there be? Do they represent a desirable element of the town?

The moderate drinker, the one who takes but a glass now and then and who says if the saloons were not in Milltown he would not miss them, advances the above argument. What class does such reasoning cater to? Should that class be catered to? Is it right that those who want to go out of town to get themselves into a drunken stupor should have their interests looked after by people who do not realize what it means? It means that if liquor is left in Milltown the children must continue to witness sights that will furnish the suggestion for their downfall in later life. It means that we will keep something our government has said affects the efficiency of its men. It means that tradespeople must continue to run accounts and wait for their money. It means that homes must continue to feel the trouble caused by the Demon Rum. It means mothers must continue to worry over their sons, wives over their husbands, and a feeling of moral degradation will continue over the entire town.

Here is the substance of the proposition. Will voters place their desire for an occasional drink and the convenience of having it in Milltown against the aching hearts of mothers and the ruin of some of the borough’s manhood? Remember, voters, a favorable decision will do much good, but an unfavorable one will make the voter responsible for all the trouble liquor causes. This is the time for Milltown people to express themselves, by voting “yes”.

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